Introduction to Blog

I launched the website and the Blog after having spoken to government officials, political analysts and security experts specializing in South Asian affairs from three continents. The feedback was uniformly consistent. The bottom line is that when Kashmiris are suffering and the world has its own set of priorities, we need to find ways to help each other. We must be realistic, go beyond polemics and demagoguery, and propose innovative ideas that will bring peace, justice and prosperity in all of Jammu and Kashmir.

The author had two reasons to create this blog. First, it was to address the question that was being asked repeatedly, especially, by journalists and other observers in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, inquiring whether the Kashmiri society was concerned about social, cultural and environmental challenges in the valley given that only political upheaval and violence were reported or highlighted by media.

Second, the author has covered the entire spectrum of societal issues and challenges facing Kashmiri people over an 8-year period with the exception of politics given that politics gets all the exposure at the expense of REAL CHALLENGES that will likely result in irreversible degradation in the quality of life and the standard of living for future generations of Kashmiris to come.

The author stopped adding additional material to the Blog once it was felt that most, if not all, concerns, challenges and issues facing the Kashmiri society are cataloged in the Blog. There are over 1900 entries in the Blog and most commentaries include short biographical sketches of authors to bring readers close to the essence of Kashmir. Unfortunately, the 8-year assessment also indicates that neither Kashmiri civil society, nor intellectuals or political leadership have any inclination or enthusiasm in pursuing issues that do not coincide with their vested political agendas. What it means for the future of Kashmiri children and their children is unfathomable. But the evidence is all laid out.

This Blog is a reality check on Kashmir. It is a historical record of how Kashmir lost its way.

Vijay Sazawal, Ph.D.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The State of Chaos

Why is it that the J&K Government is willing to hand over financial gifts to militants returning back home from Pakistan, but unwilling to help its less fortunate citizens. Whether it is Pandits or physically challenged youth, the State wants Delhi to pay up for their assistance

Two New Scholarship Schemes for Disabled Students in J&K

Centre has approved two new scholarship schemes for disabled students in Jammu and Kashmir, under which 1500 scholarships will be given out by the end of next month, a senior minister has said.

"The Central government has approved two new scholarship schemes for the state to provide financial support to the disabled," state minister for Social welfare Sakina Ittoo said here yesterday.

She said by July-end this year, 1500 such scholarships will be made available to physically challenged persons so as to facilitate their higher education.

Ittoo said various special welfare schemes have been launched for the betterment of women, physically challenged persons and those belonging to backward classes in the state.

The minister urged the beneficiaries to come forward and avail the schemes meant for them.

Ittoo said the procedures and formalities for all centrally-sponsored schemes need to be further simplified, keeping in view the hilly terrain and poor communication facilities in the state.

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